Expert on the sustainability of coral reefs

The more living coral tissue you can protect on the reef, the more resilient the coral reefs are going to be to ocean acidification.

Coral diseases have led to a dramatic decline in coral coverage in the Caribbean and globally. We study Caribbean coral diseases, in particular, White Band Disease (WBD), and the newly emerging stony coral tissue loss disease (SCTLD). We are attempting to determine the links between local and global stress and disease outbreaks, study coral resistance to disease, and attempt to determine the pathogens and their vectors on the reef.

Dr. David I. Kline is an Associate Research Biologist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego. He is a coral reef ecologist who studies the fate of coral reefs in a rapidly changing world. He studies coral reefs from the molecular to ecosystem scales using novel conservation technologies. Dr. Kline is gaining new insights into the mechanisms for corals’ response to stress to develop new strategies for protecting corals and coral reef ecosystems. Dr. Kline regularly collaborates with engineers, computer scientists, chemists, and other scientists to find new and ingenious ways to protect the future of coral reefs. These conservation technologies include an underwater time machine (called the FUTURE FOCE) that uses sensor arrays and computer-controlled dosing pumps to determine how reefs will cope with future environmental stress including ocean acidification, warming and pollution. Dr. Kline has also worked with computer vision scientists to develop a machine learning system that uses facial recognition technologies to automate the analysis of coral reef survey photographs and videos (Coral Net). With Uncharted Blue Dr. Kline will use his automated machine learning system (Coral Net) to document the health of the shallow and mesophotic reefs of Curaçao and begin to plan deployment of his underwater FUTURE FOCE time machine.

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